Workforce wellness is an essential responsibility of leadership and a key driver of performance.

But knowledge workers in developed nations are both unwell and unhappy at work, and this translates to disengagement and underperformance.

Why is workforce wellness important?

Both China and Japan have a word for ‘death from overwork’ (“guolaosi” and “karoshi”). Both nations keep statistics on how many tens of thousands die from overwork each year. Death from overwork does not refer to falling off a building whilst working on a construction site. It happens to office workers like the twenty-five year old auditor at PWC who died at her desk from overwork in 2011. Or the twenty-four year old executive at Ogilvy PR Worldwide who died at his desk after a month of overtime in 2013. Most commonly, the death certificate will state heart attack or stroke. But the real cause is chronic energy expenditure without downtime: years without a holiday, months without a weekend, days without sleeping.

According to the Australia Institute, Australians work some of the longest hours in the developed world. However not because their boss ‘makes them’. Knowledge workers in developed nations are finding themselves in the perfect storm of conditions for overworking. Wellness programs are designed to reduce burnout, the risk of injury and stress claims and support performance in taxing, complex and fluid environments.

Workforce casualization, the constant pressure to perform in increasingly fluid environments and our technological umbilical cord to the office and the globe have all invited us to move to the intoxicating world of the always-on and always-up. This way of living overtaxes our adrenal system, limits downtime to recharge, contributes to lowered immune functioning and reduces overall wellness and performance. Lowered wellness has been estimated to cost the Australian economy in excess of $79 billion. Without the right wellness initiatives your organisation can face increasing absenteeism, presenteeism, injuries and health care claims.

Our workforce wellness programs

A well workforce boosts performance and productivity and aides your employer brand so you can keep attracting and retaining the best talent. For teams; wellness supports connection, creation and collaboration. For individuals; wellness programs increase cognition, time affluence, decision making, relationship quality and ethics. Wellness programs reduce burnout, and support performance in taxing complex and fluid environments.
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Got a question?

For a discussion or case studies on workforce wellness contact Isabelle Phillips at Mackerel Sky.